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A day to honor and remember

While popularly considered the unofficial beginning of summer, Memorial Day has a long and solemn history that reaches back to the time of the Civil War. It is unclear exactly where and when the tradition started, but not long after the end of the war, during springtime tributes, Americans began decorating the graves of the many fallen soldiers from that conflict.

One of the earliest known ceremonies was organized by freed slaves in South Carolina in 1865.

In 1868, General John Logan, the leader of an organization for Northern Civil War Veterans, called for a nationwide day of remembrance on May 30. He chose the date because it was not an anniversary of any Civil War battle, and he declared that day as Decoration Day.

Over the years, Decoration Day gradually became known as Memorial Day. After World War I, the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in all wars. In 1968, as part of the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, Congress established Memorial Day as a federal holiday, observed the last Monday in May. The change went into effect in 1971.

For more information, visit and search Memorial Day.

For list of Memorial Day events happening near Castle Pines, visit and search Memorial Day 2024.


All graves at Fort Logan National Cemetery in Denver are decorated with United States flags for Memorial Day.


Article and photos by Susan Helton



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